Going to school in Tennessee is the greatest thing ever, and here are just a few reasons why: warm weather, southern hospitality, beautiful views, incredible food, the list goes on. But, there is one thing missing here— the fall.

Yes, fall is a season that happens everywhere, but down south it feels more like a continuation of summer minus the humidity.

Being born and raised in the northeast, I grew up having a distinct fall season. Fall was the perfect time of year for fun family days and exploring the beauty of our area while enjoying crisp air and sunshine, whether at a farm, or just in our backyard. Now, I’m lucky if I even see pumpkins around unless they are at a farmer’s market.

One of the best parts of fall in the northeast is the colorful foliage, and as much as you can say that still exists in Tennessee, it is not even close to the same. For starters, the leaves don’t change here until November, so it’s already winter when you get the real colorful trees. I miss seeing reds, oranges, and yellows on drives around my hometown, and watching them fall from trees outside our house from my bedroom window.

Another thing I’ve come to find is that the northeast does corn mazes way better than the south. Something I always looked forward to back home in the fall was going to this corn maze that the farm made to be a life-sized puzzle.

Every year, the maze had a new theme, and you had to travel through acres of corn to find clues that would build your map and help you find the exit. It would take hours to solve, and at times, you could get so frustrated you almost just cut through the corn to get out. But, you knew the sense of accomplishment while eating a hot apple cider donut afterward would be way better knowing you finished the maze, so you forged on.

The one corn maze I went to in Tennessee took me a whole twenty minutes, and let me just say, I was quite disappointed to find that exit because I had hoped it would have been more difficult to find.

The absolute best part about fall in the northeast is apple picking. I know I am an extreme case, but I will only eat apples a family member or I picked directly off of a tree because there is nothing like taking that first bite of a crispy apple in the middle of an apple orchard.

Call me an apple snob, but grow up living about ten minutes away from multiple apple orchards and then go eat a grocery store apple. It’s just not the same.

That being said, there is nothing like climbing to the top of an apple tree and picking big, beautiful apples that will turn into snacks, baked goods, and applesauce. For me, the best part of the apple picking is the system I have with my mom where I climb and pick, and then she catches the apples and puts them away as I drop them down to her. Doing this either weekly or biweekly in the fall with her was so special, and I miss it every day I spend thousands of miles from the orchard.

I do not know the next time I will be able to experience a northeast fall, and honestly, the thought of that sucks. You don’t realize how special seasons like fall are until you don’t get to experience them the same anymore. Anybody can argue that where they live is the best at this time of year, but I can confidently say, there is no fall anywhere as perfect as one in the northeast.